afraidGuest Post by Corina Manea

Here we are at the end of March, the first month of Spring, the month when we celebrate International Women’s Day and recall all those who had the courage to speak up, to not settle and fight for more and bring change.

It’s unbelievable how time flies. I’m pretty sure yesterday it was December and I was getting ready for Christmas. Yet, here we are.

How did you spend the first three months of the year? Did you achieve what you planned in your work? How about on a personal level?

Better yet, did you set plans for each month?

I can actually hear you making up excuses of how busy you were, how you had to do this or that for the kids, husband, house, work, etc. But here is the thing, they are just excuses we are hiding ourselves behind.

The truth is, most of the time we are afraid.

You are afraid of what your family and friends will say if you leave that job you don’t like anymore, or if you go for a week to a spa retreat, instead of staying home with the kids.

You are afraid to ask for the promotion you deserve, because of what your boss will think. Are you that good? Wouldn’t he had said something if you’d really deserved a promotion?

Should I go on? Probably not. You get my point.

You were raised to put everyone else before you, to think of anyone else but yourself. And guess what: It hurts you and the ones around you.

Stop sabotaging yourself and start living the life you were meant to live.

What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

Sheryl Sandberg asked an interesting question in her book “Lean In“: “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” I heartily recommend you read it, if you haven’t.

Stop for a moment and think about this question, like really think about it.

I can see your mind spinning with all the possibilities. I bet you would chase that dream job or launch your own business, or travel the world, or simply take more care of yourself. It’s interesting how a simple question opens up a world of possibilities.

What’s more important is the fact that everything seems not only possible, but doable. You read all the time about successful women, you dream to be one of them, you know you can be one of them, and yet you do nothing.

I am here to tell you to cut the crap you’ve been telling yourself for so long. Listen to yourself and go after those dreams. You’ll be happier, more creative, you’ll give more and do more, just because you can.

Side note: The only moment when it’s too late to chase your dreams is on your deathbed.

Here are four tips to start chasing your dreams today:

1. Make a list.

You’re used to that. You make lists for everything: To-do lists at work, grocery-shopping lists, things to do with the kids lists, birthdays and anniversary lists, etc. Now it’s time to make a list only for yourself:

What would you do if you weren’t afraid? What are your dreams on a personal and professional level?

Doesn’t matter how many you have, just list them all on a piece of paper, or on your phone or tablet.

2. Take them one by one.

Now that you have in front of you all those secret desires, take them one by one and write what would you need to do to achieve them. Don’t get overwhelmed. Leave the emotion aside, and look at them as if they were work projects.

What steps do you need to take to get closer?

Take your time. You don’t have to list every single detail, but you do need to know the steps you have to go through to achieve what you want.

3. Assign priorities and a timeline.

You have your dreams list in front of you along with the steps to achieve them. It’s time to assign priorities.

As with everything in life, not all of them are urgent or important. Start with the important ones.

How important is for you to achieve a particular dream? How would you feel if you’d achieve it this year? Imagine yourself living it now. Hold on to that feeling and write down a due date. Continue with the rest of items on your list.

4. Work on your dreams.

It’s time to choose one of the dreams on your list and define small daily steps that can take you closer.

Make a commitment to yourself that no matter what you will work daily to get closer to your bigger goal.

Yes, I agree with you: It seems easy, because it is!

When you break them down in smaller steps you realize they are doable. It takes patience and commitment to work on them daily.

You are great and wonderful just the way you are. Work for and on your dreams, give your best and the world around you will shine alongside you.

Corina ManeaCorina Manea is a PR professional and social media strategist, currently living in Madrid, Spain. Founder of NutsPR, client service manager for Arment Dietrich and Spin Sucks, she is passionate about creating great experiences for clients. Connect with her on Twitter.